Penny Lane has been making award-winning, innovative nonfiction films for over a decade. Her most recent feature documentary Hail Satan? (2019) debuted at Sundance and is now in wide release with Magnolia Pictures. Her three previous feature documentaries are The Pain of Others (2018), Nuts! (2016) and Our Nixon (2013).
The Pain of Others premiered at Rotterdam and went on to Sheffield and BAMcinemaFest. Nuts! premiered at Sundance where it won a Special Jury Prize for Editing. Our Nixon premiered at Rotterdam, won the Ken Burns Award for “Best of the Festival” at Ann Arbor, and was selected as the Closing Night Film at New Directors/New Films.
In 2018 Penny was honored with the Vanguard Award at SF DocFest, a Chicken & Egg Breakthrough Award and was admitted into the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Her short films, such as Just Add Water (2016) and The Voyagers (2010), have won accolades at film festivals and popularity online. Film festival screenings span the independent and experimental film worlds, including Sundance, Rotterdam, Images, IMPAKT, Hot Docs, Full Frame, CPH:DOX and Oberhausen.
She has been awarded grants from the Sundance Institute, Creative Capital, Cinereach, TFI Documentary Fund, Jerome Foundation, Catapult Film Fund, LEF Foundation, NYSCA, and many other organizations.
And yes, Penny Lane is her real name.
We live in a world full of images – so full it can seem rather stupid to add even more to the deluge. In this masterclass, acclaimed filmmaker Penny Lane argues for the idea that artmaking today is more about the curation of attention than some supernatural act of creation, and shares some practical, aesthetic and ethical conclusions she has drawn from a long career of appropriating extant images in all kinds of interesting ways.
How often do we equate “documentary” with “truth,” and is that a valid demand or an unfair restriction on the filmmaker? Director Penny Lane takes us on a raucous journey through tales of mermaids, conspiracy theories, quack doctors, and her own recent “mostly-true” film, NUTS! (Sundance 2016) to explore why we believe what documentaries tell us, and the common creative liberties most documentary filmmakers won’t admit to having taken in order to tell a good story.